The 2021 F1 season opener at Melbourne is set to be postponed, with Bahrain stepping in to host the first race of the season, according to reports.
This comes amid concerns that organisers could end up spending millions of dollars building the Albert Park street circuit, only for the Australian Grand Prix to be cancelled at the last minute, as it was last year due to mounting concerns about the COVID-19 pandemic.
Motorsport.com has reported that Formula One is likely to announce the postponement of the event later this month.
Speaking to the publication, a spokesperson for Formula One said we “proved that we could return to racing safely and delivered what many thought was impossible in March.
“We have set out our 2021 calendar and look forward to the return of F1 in March this year,” the spokesperson added.
Last month, Auto Motor und Sport (AMuS) reported that the Australian GP was in “jeopardy” and was likely to be replaced by the Bahrain GP as the 2021 season opener.
“At the moment it is very difficult to enter Australia and from what I hear, Melbourne wants another date on the calendar and the season would start in Bahrain,” Auto Motor und Sport (AMuS) reported in December.
“From what we hear, the start is in jeopardy. The organisation does not want to take the risk of already building the circuit, which costs money, and then having to cancel the race the week before because the government says so,” the German-language publication added.